Palomata leads Air Force past BaliPure for solo 3rd » Manila Bulletin Sports

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Air Force celebrates during the Premier Volleyball League Open Conference against Bali Pure at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan. (MB photo | Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

Air Force celebrates during the Premier Volleyball League Open Conference against Bali Pure at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan. (MB photo | Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

By KRISTEL SATUMBAGA

Games Wednesday (The Arena, San Juan City)
10 a.m. – Air Force vs IEM
1 p.m. – Megabuilders vs Cignal
4 p.m. – Creamline vs Power Smashers
6:30 p.m. – Perlas-BanKo vs UP

Hair Fairy Air Force leaned on the timely hits of Dell Palomata in the deciding fifth set to survive BaliPure, 23-25, 25-21, 25-19, 18-25, 15-11, yesterday in the Premier Volleyball League Open Conference at The Arena in San Juan City.

Palomata, a 6-foot-3 product of University of St. La Salle in Bacolod City, scored the last two points to seal the Lady Jet Spikers victory after the Water Defenders, behind Gretchel Soltones, tried to mount a comeback after falling behind 7-3 halfway in the decider.

She finished with 16 points highlighted by four blocks despite entering the match in the second set to replace Angel Antipuesto to help Air Force improve to 3-1 for solo third in the standings.

Jocemer Tapic topscored for Air Force with 17 points on 15 kills, while Iari Yongco and May Ann Pantino added 16 and 12 points, respectively.

The foursome Air Force players outplayed BaliPure’s main scorers Aiko Urdas, Risa Sato, Jerrili Malabanan, and Soltones, who combined for 66 points in a losing effort.

“Bumalik lang yung ingay namin sa loob ng court kaya kami nagkaroon ng kumpiyansa,” said Tapic.

Soltones and Aiko Urdas scored 17 points apiece but BaliPure dropped to an even 2-2 slate.

BaliPure actually had more attacks, 61-56, but its 34 unforced errors particularly in the fifth set led to its downfall.

In the men’s division, Cignal made short work of Gamboa Coffee, 25-11, 25-15, 25-18, to restore a share of the lead with idle Megabuilders with identical 4-0 slates.

Sta. Elena, on the other hand, pounced on a skidding Army side, carving out a 25-15, 22-25, 25-21, 25-23 victory to even its card at 2-2.

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